Analysis Of Friedrich Nietzsche's Criticism Of Religion

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Critics of Religion Midterm 2. Although Friedrich Nietzsche’s ideas and work have long been associated with atheism and even the antisemitism that would eventually lead to the Holocaust, I think a slightly more fitting description of his point of view in The Genealogy of Morals might be “anticlerical”. While I believe there are good arguments that can be made for both atheism and anticlericalism, Nietzsche seems to focus most of his energy on critiquing religious clergy such as priests as well as organized religion and its impact on morality, rather than critiquing belief in God. The first essay includes an etymology of the words “good” and “bad” and how they underwent a transvaluation at some point due to religious clergy, which ultimately lead to a morality system that he argues is not natural or innate within us. The second essay deals with guilt and…show more content…
Although some passages in the second essay may point to atheism, I believe that, overall, his critique of religion seems to primarily stem from his animosity towards the way in which religious belief has manifested itself in society, rather than belief in God or religious belief as a whole. In the first essay, Nietzsche discusses the etymology of the words “good” and “bad” and how they have evolved over time to have completely different meanings, meanings that he does not agree with, due to the priestly class. Prior to this transvaluation, good meant noble and powerful while bad meant poor or common (Nietzsche, 28). The “good” were able to exercise their will to power and
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